After last season’s high-energy trip to Native Americana, Junya Watanabe explored a darker, more romantic spirit for fall — beautifully so, with clothes that showed off the designer’s strong workmanship.
Watanabe stuck almost entirely to black — one exception was a white patchwork sweater — and made a statement with impressive cutting techniques. Most notably, he worked a circular pattern as a base to build upon. For example, tailored coats and jackets, ponchos and tops were constructed from fabrics in round shapes seamed together, mapped over one another and artfully bunched to add volume. These looks could have been tricky but Watanabe demonstrated just enough restraint for unexpected lightness, almost like a whipped-up confection. When teamed with cropped pants decked out in black sequins, the effect mesmerized.
The outerwear particularly stood out; the best looks included a coolly deconstructed toggle coat and a moto jacket with voluminous patchwork sleeves. Yet it wasn’t all soft fare. Some pieces — like the formfitting shiny puffer coats and the languid ribbon dresses that ended the show — read sinister. Dark indeed, and with ample allure.